Eating mushrooms may help lower prostate cancer risk

A new study published in the International Journal of Cancer found an inverse relationship between mushroom consumption and the development of prostate cancer among middle-aged and elderly Japanese men, suggesting that regular mushroom intake might help to prevent prostate cancer.

A total of 36,499 men, aged 40 to 79 years who participated in the Miyagi Cohort Study in 1990 and in the Ohsaki Cohort Study in 1994 were followed for a median of 13.2 years. During follow-up, 3.3% of participants developed prostate cancer. Compared with mushroom consumption of less than once per week, consumption once or twice a week was associated with an 8% lower risk of prostate cancer and consumption three or more times per week was associated with a 17% lower risk.

“Since information on mushroom species was not collected, it is difficult to know which specific mushroom(s) contributed to our findings. Also, the mechanism of the beneficial effects of mushrooms on prostate cancer remains uncertain,” said lead author Shu Zhang, PhD, of the Tohoku University School of Public Health, in Japan.

Read this article on Science Daily: Materials provided by Wiley. Note: Content may be edited for style and length. Wiley. “Eating mushrooms may help lower prostate cancer risk.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 September 2019. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/09/190905080106.htm.


Other research points to the following types of mushrooms for their immune system enhancing properties:

Maitake (Grifola frondosa) is an edible mushroom known in the U.S. as “hen of the woods” due to it’s appearance similar to fluffed tail feathers of a nesting hen. In addition to its anti-cancer, anti-viral and immune-enhancing properties, maitake may also help reduce blood pressure and blood sugar.

Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum) is not pleasant to eat but is available in teabags, capsules and liquid extracts. Animal studies have shown that reishi improves immune function and inhibits the growth of some malignant tumors; it is also a natural anti-inflammatory agent.

Agaricus blazei (Agaricus brasiliensis) contains beta glucans, a group of polysaccharides (complex sugars) believed responsible for this mushroom’s immune-boosting effects. Research has shown that Agaricus has anti-tumor and anti-viral activity, as well as moderating effects on blood sugar and cholesterol. Oncologists in both Japan and Brazil use this mushroom in treatment protocols. It is sold in the U.S. in dried form as well as in extracts.


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